Undefeated Panamanian sensation Rafael Pedroza and San Antonio’s own rising star, Ramon Cardenas, successfully hit the scales on Thursday, setting the stage for their much-anticipated 10-round super bantamweight clash. This prime-time duel is the main event on SHOBOX: The New Generation and will be broadcasted live on Friday, September 15 at 9:30 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME. The thrilling action unfolds at the Boeing Center at Tech Port, San Antonio, Texas.
The tripleheader promises non-stop action, showcasing fighters with an impressive collective record of 88-2-2 and a combined 54 KOs, all eager to prove their mettle. The co-feature spotlights the explosive Argentine powerhouse, Mirco Cuello, marking his U.S. return since 2020. He’ll be up against the undefeated talent from Los Angeles, Rudy Garcia, in a match that promises fireworks.
Further amplifying the evening’s boxing bonanza, the card also introduces the undefeated Freudis Rojas. Following his captivating SHOWTIME debut in July, Rojas is all set to square off against Saul Bustos, the formidable Californian with only one loss to his name. Their eight-round welterweight contest promises to be a perfect opener for a night of exhilarating boxing.
“I’m aware that Ramon Cardenas is a skilled and challenging fighter. However, I’ve dedicated myself entirely to the training for this fight. Each time I step into the ring, I grow both mentally and physically. This fight is a new hurdle, and I feel prepared for it.
My aim is to earn the audience’s respect. I aspire to be recognized as an entertainer, someone whose performance captivates, leading them to request my return to the US for another fight. I want this performance to set me apart.
Regarding strategy, I’m adaptable. My goal is to ensure the fight doesn’t rest on the judges’ decisions; I’d rather clinch it early. Whether I adopt a defensive or offensive stance will depend on my opponent’s moves. But I’m confident that my height and longer reach will disrupt his strategy.
Growing up, Roberto Duran was a significant influence in Panama. He’s more than just a boxing icon; he has positively impacted many lives, guiding them away from substance abuse and criminal activities. His guidance and advice have always been valuable to me.
Predicting if Cardenas will be my most challenging opponent is hard. He’s talented and can deliver powerful punches, but the true test will be our fight.”
“Though I’ve had numerous fights in San Antonio, this upcoming one is the highlight. Regarding being the favorite or underdog, I’ve encountered various fighting styles, so I’m not particularly anxious. I’ve only glimpsed a bit of Pedroza’s style; he seems to have a solid jab. However, I usually leave the detailed analysis to my coaches.
Having Adam Lopez, a local boxing legend, in my corner is a privilege. I’ve garnered a lot of insights from him over the years. Despite my win-lose ratio not heavily leaning towards KOs, I promise the audience an electrifying performance.”
“Argentinian boxers are known for their aggression, and I embody that spirit. I’ve familiarized myself with Rudy Garcia’s tactics and feel prepared. My extensive travel and fights across various countries, including participation in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, have sharpened my skills.
My earlier fights in the US set the stage, but now, I approach each fight with increased focus and professionalism. Competing on SHOWTIME is a childhood dream realized, reminiscent of the times I watched legends like Marcos Maidana.”
“I relish fighting aggressive opponents; it draws out my best. My style is versatile – I can be a tactical boxer or deliver powerful punches. Depending on the fight’s flow, I can adapt – be it relentless pressure or a more calculated approach.
Regarding Cuello, we’ve focused on discipline and strategy during our training. I believe I can endure and potentially dominate the entire fight duration.
Juan Manuel Marquez, with his impeccable counter-punching techniques, has always been an inspiration. Outside the boxing realm, I have a keen interest in history and aspire to teach it someday.”
“My training has centered around versatility. Depending on the situation, I can switch strategies – be it aggressive or defensive. I aim to surprise the audience by breaking out of my usual boxing style. My opponent’s style will determine our fight’s tempo, but I have several tactics up my sleeve.
My past experience on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP was surreal, an experience that every young boxer dreams of. Facing an opponent with a renowned coach like Freddie Roach is both exciting and challenging.”
“Rojas’ height might be his strength, but I’m not daunted. I acknowledge his unbeaten streak and thank him for this opportunity. I’m eager to display my capabilities.
To prepare, I’ve sparred with taller and heavier opponents. My association with Freddie Roach began in 2021, and this will be our inaugural fight together. While I won’t speculate on Rojas’ strength, I believe the upcoming fight will reveal all.
Personally, I see myself more as a strategic boxer than a fierce brawler, though I’m not averse to intensifying the action.”
Super Bantamweight Bout – 10 Rounds
Rafael Pedroza – 122 pounds
Ramon Cardenas – 121.8 pounds
Featherweight Bout – 10 Rounds
Mirco Cuello – 125.2 pounds
Rudy Garcia – 125.3 pounds
Welterweight Bout – 8 Rounds
Freudis Rojas – 146.8 pounds
Saul Bustos – 146.7 pounds